Former Blockstream CTO Gregory Maxwell sees the light

Former Blockstream CTO Gregory Maxwell sees the light

Gregory Maxwell, co-founder and former CTO of the Bitcoin Core (BTC) institution Blockstream, has had a change of heart. For reasons yet unknown, the crypto expert has come to the realization that Bitcoin SV is the real Bitcoin, and has even offered to lend a hand. He penned an email to Dr. Craig Wright of nChain and Bitcoin BCH development, in which he mentioned that he was prepared to offer his “discreet assistance.” Better late than never, it’s good to see that Maxwell has finally come around. Here is his email, formatted to make reading easier.

“I see now that Roger Ver, Rick Falkvinge, Olivier Janssens, and Jihan Wu appear to be aggressively attacking you in public and trying to distance BCH from you. To the best of my knowledge all of these parties previously believed in you. The cracks created by Peter Rizun and his staff seem to be widening at an exponential pace and are now starting to encompass people (such as the above) that previously couldn’t be convinced by any argument to align against you. It seems to me that it is simply a matter of time before a forceful public denunciation by someone previously cited as proof of your merit, such as Gavin, brings things crashing down around you.

“I believe it would be adverse for interests that concern me if your influence or prominence in BCH were in any way diminished. I am not aware of how I could be of aid in repairing this situation, but it seemed to me that it would be prudent to at least offer my discreet assistance.

“One very minor thought that comes to mind that I can offer as a show of earnest intent:

“I would not be so presumptuous as to assume an understanding of your tactics, but the assertion that OP_DSV implicates your patents appears, to me, to be backfiring in two ways:

“The connection to the cited work is too abstract for the BCH audience to understand so they are easily convinced that your claim is not being made in good faith and the invocation of patent enforcement makes it too easy to present you as a bad actor. Your use of vague patent allegations worked when Ver/etc. and their sock armies were on your side, but to my eyes they appear to be working against you now that they aren’t. If I might be so bold as to point out: Since OP_DSV is almost line by line equivalent to CHECKSIGFROMSTACKVERIFY published in the elements sidechain in May 2015, if anyone had any direct IPR on this operation it would be Blockstream. I was surprised to see that the tact that you and others opposing DSV was not to take the argument that DSV is backdoor blockstream technology and that it should be rejected in order to keep BCH free of that influence (obviously not a view I share, but it’s one that I expect could gain substantial traction). Your somewhat chaotic appearing opposition to DSV reinterpreted in the light of being motivated to protect BCH from a _third party_ encumbrance might play much better.

“But as I said, I don’t assume to understand your tactics. I also don’t believe that an improvement on that minor battlefront would do anything to address the greater issue of the attempted ouster in progress by the above named parties.”

Gregory Maxwell leaves Blockstream for independent ‘deep protocol work’

Gregory Maxwell leaves Blockstream for independent ‘deep protocol work’

As early as November 2017, there have been reports circulating in the crypto community that Gregory Maxwell is leaving or has left Blockstream to pursue other endeavors. This has been confirmed recently in a circulated email from Linux Foundation by Maxwell himself.

In the email, made publicly available early Friday morning, Maxwell announced that he left Blockstream two months ago “in order to spend more time working independently on deep protocol work.”

Maxwell said he plans to extend his interest in cryptographic privacy and security technology for Bitcoin and other blockchain-related innovations.

The Bitcoin Core developer has been known to praise high fees and 300,000 transactions stuck in the mempool of legacy Bitcoin, otherwise known as SegWit1x (BTC), saying, “Personally, I’m pulling out the champaign that market behaviour is indeed producing activity levels that can pay for security without inflation, and also producing fee paying backlogs needed to stabilize consensus progress as the subsidy declines.”

Maxwell admitted that when he co-founded Blockstream his concern was that “there was significant underinvestment in Bitcoin technology,” noting that while Bitcoin had the technical community to back it up, it didn’t have the “industry support” to scale at the time. This was how Blockstream began as a corporate initiative to improve the use-specific codes surrounding Bitcoin, according to Maxwell.

Things have turned rather sour of late, though, as it seemed that Blockstream’s new implementations eroded standard procedures. Recently, an attack against r/bitcoin was allegedly found to have been perpetrated by Maxwell when he was still with Blockstream.

Incidents like these dismayed BTC supporters like Cøbra of bitcoin.org and bitcointalk.org, who tweeted: “The way @Blockstream is promoting LN use on mainnet is very irresponsible. People will lose money and LN reputation will be damaged. A few weeks ago, I received a disgusting and accusatory email out of nowhere from someone very high up their chain of command. Terrible company.”

Maxwell said that he will now be pursuing newer technologies like Bulletproofs, signature aggregation, as well as optimization methods for block propagation and synchronization. The Blockstream team page has since been taken down in light of Maxwell’s departure.

The news comes after years of allegations leveled at Blockstream (and Maxwell, by extension) by crypto enthusiasts over how the company has managed to destroy the ecosystem by centralizing its decisions to a single, supposedly elite team of coders.

Contrary to this, the aim of bitcoin should begin without leaders, every decision must be consensus-based, formed from a decentralized community. This has been demonstrated through community responses to a tweet from BTC supporter @CobraBitcoin somewhat praising Bitcoin Cash, saying, “Parts of the Bitcoin Cash community are excellent and very passionate, in fact, in some ways I see more passion from them than almost any other cryptocurrency community. Sad their “leaders” are all frauds though.”

In just a few moments, his tweet was met with kind tips from BCH community members, with a few like @cryptokidd replying: “In the #BitcoinCash community…we’re all leaders…we’re passionate to expose the fraud, not to support it. This community understands we’re all part of something bigger, not under someone’s thumb.”

Note: Tokens in the SegWit chain are referred to as SegWit1X (BTC) and SegWit Gold (SWG) and are no longer Bitcoin. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is the only true  Bitcoin as intended by the original Satoshi white paper.  Bitcoin BCH is the only public block chain that offers safe and cheap microtransactions.